The Royal Gambler Movie Review

The Royal Gambler or Jackpot or Daebak is one of the Sageuk dramas that is quite unique. Using the theme of gambling, it becomes a royal drama with an interesting storyline. Broadly speaking, this drama tells of the revenge mission of the disowned king’s son. Even though it feels predictable, the plot of The Royal Gambler is guaranteed to be different from similar dramas.

For you fans of Jang Keun Suk and Yeo Jin Goo, The Royal Gambler must be on your weekend viewing list. Moreover, this is Keun Suk’s first drama after not starring in any title for quite a while. However, before watching it right away, let’s take a look at the synopsis and review below!

Synopsis The Royal Gambler

  • Year of Release 2016
  • Genres Action , Comedy , Drama , Family , Friendship , Historical , Period , Royalty , Sageuk
  • Director Namgeon
  • Cast ∙ Jang Geun Suk ∙ Yeo Jin Goo ∙ Jeon Kwang Ryul ∙ Choi Min Soo ∙ Im Ji Yeon

Baek Dae Gil (Jang Geun Suk) is the first son of Choi Suk Bin (Yoon Jin Seo) and King Suk Jong (Choi Min Soo). Choi Suk Bin is a king’s concubine who previously had a nobleman’s husband. Because he lost at gambling, the noble fell into poverty.

Once upon a time the king fell in love with Suk Bin and wanted the woman no matter what. Using his power and assisted by Lee In Jwa (Jeon Kwang Ryul), King Suk Jong finally manages to get Suk Bin through a gambling game.

The Royal Gambler

Within six months after the wedding, Suk Bin gave birth to a healthy baby boy. However, because he was born prematurely, this gave rise to rumors in the community that the baby was not the son of a king.

This makes Suk Bin look for ways to keep the baby safe. She then entrusted her child to her ex-husband and then exchanged it for a dead baby. Apart from being “thrown away” by his mother, Dae Gil was also shot by arrows and thrown into the bottom of a ravine. But the baby is still safe.

When the king is about to harm him through a trap, Dae Gil is saved by Baek Man Geum (Lee Moon Shik). The fate of that child is so lucky that he can survive various kinds of threats that endanger his life.

Growing up his life did not improve at all. The man even became a slave in the salt fields. One day, fate brings her to meet Prince Yeon Ing (Yeo Jin Goo). Without knowing that they are brother and sister, the two are friends and work together to reveal Lee In Jwa’s cunning. The method? Gamble!

Dae Gil’s ability to gamble is well known in Joseon. He looks calm even though he actually holds hatred and grudges. Meanwhile Prince Yeon Ing is a figure who does not carelessly bow his head to anyone.

When gambling both are risking two different things. Dae Gil puts his life on the line while the prince puts his kingdom and fortune on the line. How does the end of the story of these two brothers? Can Dae Gil find his rightful place?

Drama about Revenge

The Royal Gambler or Jackpot, also known as Daebak, shows the revenge of a king’s son whose existence is not recognized. The interesting thing about this is that his revenge is not aimed at becoming a king, but purely wants to kill someone who has been cunning and evil to him.

In this case Dae Gil wants to finish Lee In Jwa completely because the man has killed his adoptive father, Baek Man Geum. Man Geum’s death is one of In Jwa’s tactics to make Dae Gil’s relationship with the king even more heated.

Review The Royal Gambler

In Jwa’s cunning doesn’t only apply to Dae Gil. The man also did the same thing to Dam Seo’s father (Lim Ji Yeon). In Jwa killed him then on behalf of the king who did it. This is what then creates revenge in Dam Seo’s heart.

It was later discovered that In Jwa’s actions were also based on a personal grudge against the king. The king turned out to have killed all members of his family in the past. The Royal Gambler has a storyline that is suitable for fans of story plots filled with revenge.

Unambitious King’s Son

In dramas like this, when a child of a king who is disowned grows up and seeks revenge, everything he does is aimed at ascending the throne and becoming the successor of the kingdom. However, Dae Gil is a quite different son of a king. He had no ambitions for the throne or anything to do with power.

As someone who knows that Dae Gil is the king’s son, Prince Yeon Ing is worried that his sibling will claim his rights as the royal successor. However, until the end of the prince’s concern was not proven.

Dae Gil still chooses to be a commoner. He also did not use his status to attract women from high society. The guy in the end still marries a mediocre girl. It was told in the last episode that Dae Gil married Gye Sul Im (Kim Ga Eun).

Memorable Character Development

The Royal Gambler also exhibits impressive character development. On the character Dae Gil for example. At the beginning of the story it is shown that he is a figure who is often rebellious and childish. However, everything develops and changes in the end. The king’s first son became a wise and mature man.

Even with Prince Yeon Ing’s character. Originally he was the son of a king who was quite friendly and kind. After holding the power of the man turned into firm and difficult to trust other people. Including his own brother. Yeon Ing also prefers to be alone enjoying his silence.

Movie The Royal Gambler

Drama Full of Tricks

Like other Sageuk dramas, The Royal Gambler also presents royal-style tricks. The struggle for power, revenge and the cunning behavior of one of the characters is an interesting treat that will not cause boredom when watching it.

You will be annoyed and hated by In Jwa’s character who is greedy and uses many ways to overthrow the king. Including killing innocent people. Another trick of the struggle for power is also shown by the character of King Gyeongjong (Hyun Woo).

Prince Yeon Ing’s older brother is said to have killed all the ministers who supported his younger brother. Since then the hatred in Yeon Ing’s heart began to grow. It’s different with Dae Gil’s ideas and tricks. Instead, he wanted to help the kingdom by stopping In Jwa’s rebellion. In Jwa was finally caught and punished.

Jang Keun Suk’s Acting After Three Years

The drama The Royal Gambler is Jang Keun Suk’s first drama again after three years of taking a break from acting. Finally, this actor starred in Bel Ami in 2013. For Jang Keun Suk fans, this drama must have been eagerly awaited.

Interestingly, this is the actor’s first character in the drama Sageuk. Usually, Jang Keun Suk stars more in stories with a modern setting that is typical of a love story. Apart from Bel Ami, the man who was born on August 4, 1987 has also successfully starred in the series Love Rain (2012) with the beautiful actress Yoona.

Feel free to start the first episode of The Royal Gambler. You will be presented with a different story from the king’s son. There is no excessive ambition to rule except from the antagonist. More curious? Watch it soon!



Zephyrine is an experienced film critic who has worked for many magazines and websites specializing in cinema. She has a deep education in film history and theory, as well as a passion for classic and independent films. Writing style: Zephyrine always evaluates films objectively and honestly, not influenced by external factors such as the fame of actors or directors. She often focuses on the content, screenplay, technique, and personal feelings to provide insights and reviews of the film. Her writing style is easy to understand and familiar to readers, but also professional and profound. Notable articles: "Step Up" - Success comes from the perseverance and relentless effort of young people "The Social Network" - A fantastic documentary film about the birth of Facebook "Moonlight" - A touching story about love and the essence of humanity "Nomadland" - A poignant journey of a mature woman "Parasite" - A sensational film of Korean cinema with profound social messages.

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